Friendship & Companionship

Exploring Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

By Andrea Reuther & Abbie Bennett

Throughout the novel, Shelley uses the idea of friendship as a powerful theme - from Walton's letters to his sister and Victor's relationship with the creature. Companionship and friendship are very important in this novel because they show the reader the importance of having companions and people to interact with. One example of this would be how lonely and miserable the creature was because he had no friends and Victor had abandoned him. The consequences of Victor refusing to create the creature a female companion were fatal. The creature killed all of Victor's close family and friends out of revenge.

Quotes from the Novel

  • "You may deem me romantic, my dear, sister but I bitterly feel the want of a friend." (Letter 2) In this quote Walton is writing to his sister about his exploration. He has not yet found a friend and is quite lonely. The want for friendship companionship and is something everyone wants no matter who they are.
  • "I felt suddenly, and for the first time during many months, calm and serene joy. I welcomed my friend..." (Chapter 5) Here Victor is talking about seeing his best friend Henry Clarvel. Seeing his friend makes him happy. The company of friends makes us all happy and we get certain satisfaction when seeing them.
  • “But where were my friends and relations? No father had watched my infant days, no mother had blessed me with smiles and caresses” (Chapter 13) The creature is observing the family he comes across and realizes that he is quite lonely. He is longing for a family or a friend to have to be part of a family like this. It is a natural need that we all have to belong .
  • “My heart beat quick; this was the hour and moment of trial, which would of trial, which would decide my hopes or realize my fears.” (Chapter 15) The creature is about to meet the family he has been observing and has come to love. He knows he is not accepted by most and is now afraid that they will deject him. This is the point that will determine if he will be happy or sad, if he will have friends or be lonely.

  • "You must create a female for me with whom I can live in the interchange of those sympathies necessary for my being. This you alone can do, and I demand it of you as a right which you must not refuse to concede." (Chapter 17) Here the creature wants a companion. He is not accepted by humans so maybe he will be accepted my someone like him. He wants the comfort of a companion so badly he will be willing to commit murder over it.
  • “I entered the room where the corpse lay and was led up to the coffin. How can I describe my sensations on beholding it? I feel yet parched with horror, nor can I reflect on that terrible moment without shuddering and agony. The examination, the presence of the magistrate and witnesses, passed like a dream from my memory when I saw the lifeless form of Henry Clerval stretched before me. I gasped for breath, and throwing myself on the body, I exclaimed, “ … Clerval, my friend, my benefactor—" (Chapter 21) Here Victor learns that his best friend has died. This makes him sad as it would anyone when they lose a friend because friendship is an important part of our life.

Modern Connections

Having friends and companions is a very important aspect of modern life. From social media to texting, keeping in touch with friends and family is now easier than ever. The amount of people using some type of social media has increased dramatically since 2005. Keeping in touch with family and friends is now an important part of daily life.

  • The link below (15 Reasons We Need Friends) is an article explaining the importance and benefits of having friends & companions. It also shows the significance of friends during developmental stages and throughout life. An example from this article relating to the story would be in reason 9. It says "Loneliness is painful, especially when you are living with loneliness for a prolonged period of time." This shows that the creature was very miserable and lonely throughout the story because he had no friends.
  • The chart below shows the vast increase of social media users in the past 8 years. This shows how important keeping in touch with friends & talking with other people has become very important to us.
  • The link at the bottom of the page shows 5 additional benefits of social media and the the importance it has in modern life.

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